Review – Female Furies #4: Barda’s Great Escape

Comic Books DC This Week
Female Furies #4 cover, via DC Comics.

Female Furies #4 – Cecil Castellucci, Writer; Adriana Melo, Artist; Hi-Fi, Colorist

Ray – 3/10

Ray: Heading into its second act after last issue’s mindlessly sadistic death of original Female Fury Aurelie, this title continues its bizarre exploration of sexism on Apokalips with a strange mix of extreme sexual violence, overly broad satire, and extremely topical references. The story now shifts to Big Barda and Scott Free, as their begin their quest to break free of Apokalips for good. This essentially makes Aurelie a fridging in service of another woman’s story – not an improvement. The issue opens with a young Granny Goodness poisoning and imprisoning Heggra, the original paramour of Darkseid, so she could steal her son Orion for the swap. The series continuously shifts between making Granny a point of view character and a loathsome villain with no redeeming qualities. In the present day, Scott and Barda hatch their escape plan and we get a brief flashback to their childhood courtship – but there’s nothing new here that hasn’t been covered better in the King/Gerads mini.

Granny’s first betrayal. Via DC Comics.

An ongoing theme in this series has been the way women are constantly disrespected, with even the highest-ranking Fury being expected to submit to the authority of a generic male grunt. It’s very The Handmaid’s Tale, yes, but it’s also a concept that doesn’t make sense in the world of Apokalips. Ever since its inception, this death-world has been shown to respect one thing – power. Darkseid follows a twisted sort of logic – if something helps his goal of mastery over death, he’ll embrace it. For him to create a gender-apartheid system that degrades, imprisons, tortures, and ultimately kills many of his best warriors makes no internal logic – but then, neither does his decision to abruptly pardon Barda and promote her when she confesses her part in the murder of one of his minions. This is a comic that started out with a point it wanted to make, and never stopped to wonder if this was the right story to make it with.

To find reviews of all the DC issues, visit DC This Week.

GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.

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